Mississippi College

Mississippi College School of Nursing Spotlights Class of 2012

May 7, 2012

With the USA unemployment rate dropping to 8.1 percent this week, job prospects look bright for Mississippi College’s new nursing graduates.

There were 29 students receiving diplomas at spring commencement ceremonies on Friday May 4 at Swor Auditorium.

Nationwide, there are more than 2.7 million registered nurses working today – from the delivery room to hospices and nursing homes for seniors.

“I’m waiting on a call,” says Candice Duke of Port Allen, La., a Summa Cum Laude graduate, who feels pretty confident that she will soon land a job in the healthcare profession.

Salary really isn’t a big concern when that first job offer comes through.

“I came into nursing to help others,” Duke said while posing for pictures with her classmates. Mississippi College’s School of Nursing gave her the complete training she needed to take the next step. “I like the small classes – how personal it is.”

On her way to greet family and friends, Lauren Goolsby of Clinton, says she hopes to find work at a hospital emergency room.

Even during the nation’s economic woes, there’s been a nice uptick in nursing opportunities from coast to coast.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects registered nurse employment growth of 26 percent between 2010 and 2020, an increase of 711,900 positions. The bureau reports the median annual wage for a registered nurse was $64,690 in 2010. The highest paid positions were in metropolitan areas of northern California, including San Jose, San Francisco and Oakland.

Daniel Holloway, an MC nursing graduate from Ridgeland, said he’s entering the field because it’s a “profession that provides hands-on care to patients.”

Mississippi College is the third college he’s attended “and by far the best,” Holloway said. “It is a Christian school that pulls it all together.”

The Ridgeland High graduate is now sizing up one job offer in metro Jackson.

Rebecca Barker of Wesson, who hopes to graduate from the MC School of Nursing in 2013, stopped by to congratulate one of the new alums, Laney Brock of Cleveland.

Mississippi College’s School of Nursing is fantastic, Barker says. “I love the faculty – they are wonderful and so understanding.”

Why did she go into nursing? “I always felt the call of God,” she said as parents, other relatives and friends exchanged hugs with the Class of 2012.

Some of the new MC graduates currently have jobs, including Katrinia Wilks, a nurse for 14 years. A Jackson resident and RN, she works at the University of Mississippi Medical Center in UMC’s intensive care unit.“It’s a blessing to be there.”

School of Nursing Dean Mary Jean Padgett gave high marks to the Class of 2012. “This was a wonderful group of students,” she said. The new MC grads are well-qualified to take a major role as healthcare leaders “to improve the health of our nation,” Padgett said.


Photo: School of Nursing graduate Lauren Goolsby of Clinton

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